Arsenal vs Sporting CP Europa League Predictions

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By user:James Morton
Arsenal vs Sporting CP

Thursday November 8th, 20:00.

The Europa League returns this week with an important Group E clash between Arsenal and Sporting CP on Thursday evening in a game the hosts are favourites to win, although both teams are tipped to progress through the group.

Predictions

Both these sides are well positioned to progress through the group and into the round of 32, which will get underway in February.

Each side had won both of their opening two games – against Qarabag from Azerbaijan and Ukrainian team Vorskla respectively – putting them in control of the group.

However, the Gunners won last time out in Lisbon thanks to Danny Welbeck’s strike, meaning that if Sporting lose here they could be looking over their shoulders in the group.

Unai Emery’s side now have a 100% record in the group and a victory here would virtually assure them of their advancement, while a draw would keep them firmly in pole position.

The hosts will be favourites to make it four European wins out of four due to possessing home advantage, superior form and quality over Sporting.

The home side are favourites to win this game although it may not be comfortable – a 2-1 triumph for the North London side would appear a likely outcome from it.

Betting Tips

This was the outcome last month in Lisbon – when Sporting matched the Gunners for long periods but eventually fell to a defeat. There could be a similar outcome this time around with the Portuguese side having plenty of technical ability of their own, but beyond their starting XI and their inferior fitness levels may tell in the second half.

The English striker has already netted twice in this competition so far this season, including in last month’s meeting in the Portuguese capital. Last season, Welbeck managed three in Europe and he will be hoping to match that number on Thursday night. He has scored 12 European goals throughout his career and is likely to start this game (as he has done for Arsenal in their three group games to date) as Emery rotates his side.

Statistics

Head to Head

Perhaps somewhat surprisingly given the European exploits of both clubs in European competition, these two sides have never previously met before this season. This will be their second meeting in this year’s group stage following Arsenal’s 1-0 win in Lisbon a fortnight prior.

Stats

  • Arsenal are undefeated in their last 14 matches in all competitions, having lost each of their opening two fixtures this season.
  • The Gunners have netted 36 goals in that run – more than 2.5 per game.
  • Sporting CP have endured a disappointing start to the domestic season in Portugal but sit only two points off the top of the league, in fourth spot.
  • The Lisbon-based giants have managed just 16 goals in nine league outings – joint fourth best in the division – while only finding the net four times in their three Europa League games to date.
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